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BS: offensive words

Ed T 17 Jul 10 - 10:06 AM
GUEST,Silas 17 Jul 10 - 10:07 AM
Ed T 17 Jul 10 - 10:13 AM
Ed T 17 Jul 10 - 10:19 AM
Jack Campin 17 Jul 10 - 10:24 AM
Will Fly 17 Jul 10 - 10:26 AM
GUEST,Silas 17 Jul 10 - 10:33 AM
Phil Cooper 17 Jul 10 - 10:45 AM
artbrooks 17 Jul 10 - 10:56 AM
michaelr 17 Jul 10 - 11:43 AM
Ed T 17 Jul 10 - 11:59 AM
Ed T 17 Jul 10 - 12:08 PM
Dave Hanson 17 Jul 10 - 12:17 PM
kendall 17 Jul 10 - 12:24 PM
GUEST,mg 17 Jul 10 - 12:36 PM
Jack Campin 17 Jul 10 - 12:36 PM
Rapparee 17 Jul 10 - 12:41 PM
Uncle_DaveO 17 Jul 10 - 12:42 PM
maple_leaf_boy 17 Jul 10 - 12:45 PM
bobad 17 Jul 10 - 12:46 PM
Jack Campin 17 Jul 10 - 12:54 PM
Ebbie 17 Jul 10 - 01:36 PM
michaelr 17 Jul 10 - 01:37 PM
Amos 17 Jul 10 - 02:24 PM
frogprince 17 Jul 10 - 02:48 PM
Richard Bridge 17 Jul 10 - 03:15 PM
Ed T 17 Jul 10 - 03:15 PM
Ebbie 17 Jul 10 - 04:07 PM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Jul 10 - 04:48 PM
GUEST,David E. 17 Jul 10 - 06:02 PM
GUEST,Riginslinger 17 Jul 10 - 06:21 PM
McGrath of Harlow 17 Jul 10 - 06:37 PM
Lizzie Cornish 1 17 Jul 10 - 06:54 PM
Rapparee 17 Jul 10 - 07:40 PM
Midchuck 17 Jul 10 - 08:38 PM
Beer 17 Jul 10 - 09:39 PM
Rapparee 17 Jul 10 - 10:42 PM
Bobert 17 Jul 10 - 10:54 PM
Beer 17 Jul 10 - 10:55 PM
Beer 17 Jul 10 - 11:05 PM
mousethief 18 Jul 10 - 12:51 AM
MGM·Lion 18 Jul 10 - 07:39 AM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Jul 10 - 02:36 PM
VirginiaTam 18 Jul 10 - 03:02 PM
maple_leaf_boy 18 Jul 10 - 03:52 PM
Bainbo 18 Jul 10 - 03:56 PM
GUEST,Riginslinger 18 Jul 10 - 04:17 PM
GUEST,mg 18 Jul 10 - 04:35 PM
kendall 18 Jul 10 - 04:52 PM
Beer 18 Jul 10 - 07:10 PM

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Subject: BS: potentially offensive words
From: Ed T
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:06 AM

I noted in a recent thread, a poster used the word "retarded", and was taken to task for it. I never use the word in the context it was used. But, do hear it used that way now and then, mostly from folks that don't intend to offend anyone associated with a mental issue.

That got me thinking. Many of us could be unknowingly using one or two words that are considered inappropriate, if only in certain societies, countries or locals...or by particular groups.

I recall being taken to task for using the words "girls" and "ladies", when I should have been saying women. I was told to be careful when using the word "adopt" by a woman who had just adopted a young child....she was taking issue with the word in a community project called "adopt a stream". (I have made adjustments with using words, when told they should not be used, or should be used differently).

I noted a word issue yesterday on CNN, where someone used the term "coloured", intending to say black. I also came accross folks saying Oriental, when they meant Asian, and Eskimo, when they meant Inuit.

So, got any words (or wisdom) to share that we should be careful of, when posting or speaking?


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: GUEST,Silas
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:07 AM

'Retarded' is not offensive.

'Retard' is.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Ed T
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:13 AM

We all remember some of those really hurtful...and some racial...terms used (sometimes innocently)when we were young.
As a caution, let's try and keep away from those, as it serves no purpose.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Ed T
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:19 AM

Oposing views on using "retard or retarded", ("you are retared, or your a retard") when intending to mean something like "your stupid".

http://www.helium.com/debates/111682-is-the-slang-use-of-the-word-retard-or-retarded-discriminatory/side_by_side?page=13


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Jack Campin
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:24 AM

"Asian" in the UK almost always means somebody from the Indian subcontinent, you wouldn't ordinarily use it to describe a Chinese person. I'd probably use "Oriental" to describe somebody who might equally well be Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese or Korean and when I have no additional information to decide where they come from - what other word covers that situation?


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Will Fly
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:26 AM

If the woman didn't like the concept of adopting a stream, then she might not be very pleased with:

adoptabook.bl.uk/

www.adoptabeach.org.uk/

WWF-Adopt-a-Animal.co.uk

The concept of "adopting a road" in the UK is where a local council has accepted responsibility for the maintenance of what was formerly a private road.

Language and its changing use has become a minefield - and it's not always easy to know what is acceptable and unacceptable in different societies. I recall, at a work meeting in a university, being told that the term "Third world" was not acceptable. I was told that "Global South" should be used instead - which was news to me.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: GUEST,Silas
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:33 AM

Blind people are not Blind anymore, they are 'visually impaired' and a thousand more ridiculous PC definitions. Personally, I am a fat, balding, short sighted loudmouth. (And that's the way I like it)


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Phil Cooper
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:45 AM

In the Ask Amy column a couple weeks ago, when discussing parents coming out with a stream of invective in front of their children, someone said they suffered from vehicular turrett's syndrome. That was in reference to swearing in traffic in front of the kids. A lot of people liked the phrase. A couple weeks later someone wrote in that it was offensive to turrett's sufferers. I thought it just means almost anything will be offensive to someone. You can't cover all the bases. I would not intentionally say something I knew someone else thought was offensive. But sometimes things can be done unintentionally, and I don't worry too much about that.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: artbrooks
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:56 AM

Well, once the words of preference were such things as "idiot", imbecile" and "moron", and there were great debates on the appropriate dividing line between them. Those were abandoned for the then politically-correct term, "retarded", meaning delayed. That was abandoned when it (or its derivatives) became terms of abuse (normally not directed toward those who didn't fit the medical definition). The newer expression "developmentally disabled" is being replaced with "developmentally delayed"...and that is being overtaken by "intellectually disabled".

Jumping into this with both size 13 boots (and I think this is principally a US issue), we once used the word Negro (with or without capitol letter) to describe any person who had one ancestor of African origin, regardless of how far removed. The word, with a slight noun shift, is the Spanish word for black. Polite people said "Colored" instead - and we know what impolite people used. Both of these were replaced at the beginning of the PC era with Black, which was then replaced by African-American. Strangely enough, during the last presidential election, there was some discussion on whether or not Mr. Obama, with one American parent of Northern European descent and one African parent, was entitled to be called an African-American!


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: michaelr
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 11:43 AM

It's offensive to call someone short-sighted when they're in fact near-sighted. ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Ed T
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 11:59 AM

Article related to the topic:

http://aggslanguage.wordpress.com/2010/03/30/political-correctness-euphemism-with-attitude/


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Ed T
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:08 PM

Personally, I liked the English language better, when "fuck" was considered a bad word...and, used broadly in other languages, and often used most effectively (by most males and the more daring females). It's now so mundane and accepted that one can selectively use it in Mudcat, without even getting Joe O upset:(


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:17 PM

And now I'm not overweight anymore, I'm under tall, for my weight I should be 6ft 9ins

Dave H


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: kendall
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:24 PM

It's impossible to go through this life without stepping on someones toes.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:36 PM

I think some of the words used in an I am superior to them manner quite often on this forum are redneck, trailer trash, wannabe, Plastic Paddy...I find all of them offensive especially when the intention seems to be to want to insult...which is not always the case of course. Sometimes words just creep into our vocabulary and we have social permission to use them. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Jack Campin
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:36 PM

Is "coloured" still used in South Africa?

The term itself wasn't necessarily racist, though what apartheid did to people labelled as such obviously was.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:41 PM

So you can no longer retard the spark when starting an antique vehicle? If you don't it will stall and not run.

Personally, I find all language offensive. Please communicate in mathematical statements.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:42 PM

Well, as to "retarded", I say that my son Hans, who is a 36 year old Down's Syndrome individual, is retarded, with nary a blush nor a hesitation. But don't you call him "a retard"!

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: maple_leaf_boy
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:45 PM

I don't like the terms "jock", "mick", or "papist." I've heard these
terms used.
As for the term "coloured", a related word n****r I hear being used.
But, most of the time when I hear it used, it's not meant for African
people. It's used to describe someone who is lazy, dumb, and ignorant.
I referred to a white man as a n****r before, because he was lazy
and stupid. I hope no one takes that as an offense.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: bobad
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:46 PM

I find "gas fracking" offensive.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Jack Campin
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 12:54 PM

The BBC's official list of offensive words:

http://www.badscience.net/2006/03/cunt-fuck-wanker/


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 01:36 PM

"As for the term "coloured", a related word n****r I hear being used.
But, most of the time when I hear it used, it's not meant for African
people. It's used to describe someone who is lazy, dumb, and ignorant.
I referred to a white man as a n****r before, because he was lazy
and stupid. I hope no one takes that as an offense." maple_leaf_boy

Well, yes. I would take offense at it. Think of it as 'circular'.

Black people used to be called that and the implied meaning was that they were 'lazy and stupid (and worse).

So, if I call a white man by that word implying that he is lazy and stupid, I am applying a word that *used* to mean a lazy and stupid people. I am going along with the original meaning, saying that he is no better than they.

I'm not sure I'm making my reasoning clear. Suffice it to say that yes, I would find it offensive whether or not the speaker meant it so.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: michaelr
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 01:37 PM

This line is from a song by Gerry O'Beirne:

In the land of the Patagarang, the murkies are dreaming

Is it offensive to refer to Aborigines as "murkies"?


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Amos
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 02:24 PM

I think having over-sensitive, easily-offended sensibilities is itself offensive, to the degree that it inhibits communication by putting people of ordinary good-will on an unnecessary lookout and makes them unduly careful.

Lanuage is alive and can be used for humor, color and vicid communication as easily as it can be used for insult, derogation, or subjugation. The difference is not found in the words used but in the intent and the context thereof.

Pinning offense down to individual words is --in my own personal opinion--a lazy sort of substitute thinking.


A


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: frogprince
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 02:48 PM

A few months back one of the group that hangs out in the local doughnut shop most mornings lamented that "It's gotten to where I can't even say nigger anymore". Lest there be any confusion as to his meaning, he is essentially a Klansman without an actual membership card. I wasn't in a frame of mind to bite my tongue that morning. I just told him that I really didn't find the word any more offensive than cocksucker or motherfucker. I think a couple of the other regulars just about fainted from shock.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 03:15 PM

I ahve been criticised for using "handicapped" as a refernce to a lack of ability. Apparently the formation derives from begging - going "cap in hand".


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Ed T
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 03:15 PM

I recall the term "indian giver" the was once used in some school texts? I also remember the word "Jap" being taken out of WW2 stories in some school books. Then there is the word Squaw, which many native Americans and Canadians want removed from place names (like in Squaw Mountain).


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 04:07 PM

'Indian giver', of course, derives from the members of the white culture not understanding that any gift demanded a gift of equal value in return. If a gift was not reciprocated, the gift was reclaimed. This was/is true not just of the American Indians in the 'lower 48' but also of the Alaska natives.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 04:48 PM

The offence lies in the intent, whether that is an intent to insult, or an assumption of some kind of inferiority - but where a word is used frequently enough with an offensive intent, it is liable to convey that offensive intent even where it is not present. That is when it can become advisable to abandon it and use a word that doesn't have those associations.

Of course sooner or later it is liable to pick up those associations, since the people with the intent to offend will still be around degrading the language and the planet. So the caravan has to move on.

Alongside this there is the phenomena of people who seek to find offensive associations in words which do not in fact have such associations - essentially they are playing power games, sometimes with pretty sick motives.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: GUEST,David E.
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 06:02 PM

I find "youguys" offensive. As in two (straight) couples out to dinner and the server asking "Can I get youguys something to drink?" And when we move on to offensive phrases I'd like to nominate "sorrybouthat."

David E.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: GUEST,Riginslinger
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 06:21 PM

"Comprehensive Immigration Reform"


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 06:37 PM

Irritating isn't really the same as offensive, Dave.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 06:54 PM

I have a new book...It's called 'The Way of F**k It' ...although I'd not have the stars in...It's filled with really useful thoughts, along the lines of

"You've been a naughty boy/girl
You've taken things too seriously
Write 20 lines, saying "F**k it!"
to all those things..

I say F**k It! to.....
I say Fuck It! to....."

Etc..etc..and f**king etc..

And..

"You've searched
You've done the therapy
You have all the badges
All this to discover
You were already there....
F**k it!"

:0)

Lizzie, an Ol' Girl who used to be a young girl and who is most definitely STILL a Lady, albeit a F**king Naughty One!

;0)


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 07:40 PM

Words, in and of themselves, are innocuous. My Webster's Third International (unabridged dictionary) just sits calmly on the self waiting for me to use it.

The context in which the words are used, coupled with folk ideas, that cause the trouble. See, for example, what snopes.com has to say about the word "handicapped."

Banning a word, like banning a book, only makes it more powerful.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Midchuck
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 08:38 PM

Someone has set up a page in Facebook, with no content that is anything special, but a truly wonderful title:

There is no "I" in "team," but there are three "U"s in "Shut the F*** Up!"

Peter


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Beer
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 09:39 PM

Great line Midchuck. Bobad what the heck does "gas fracking" mean? I guess I must be dumb eh!.
Frogprince, good for you.

Spent some time in Newfoundland a few years back and upon arrival I was told that I should not use the term "Newfie" as there is a movement taking place by some that find the word offensive. So I replied by saying, "Holly Fuck, you mean there will be no more Newfie jokes"
ad.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:42 PM

So what SHOULD I call that breed of big, hairy, wonderful dogs? Oh, I know! Dachshunds!


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Bobert
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:54 PM

POffensive words???

Dick Cheney, fir starters...


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Beer
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 10:55 PM

hahahaha!!
Newfoundlanders of course.
ad.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Beer
Date: 17 Jul 10 - 11:05 PM

I just thought of one.
"Jesus Christ"
Play with this for a while. Not offensive? Well years ago my older brother was caught saying this in fun and got the broom handle across the back by Mum for doing so. Maybe not so offensive today but back in the fifties and early sixties growing up as a R/C it would have been.
ad.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: mousethief
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 12:51 AM

Frogprince: A few months back one of the group that hangs out in the local doughnut shop most mornings lamented that "It's gotten to where I can't even say nigger anymore". Lest there be any confusion as to his meaning, he is essentially a Klansman without an actual membership card. I wasn't in a frame of mind to bite my tongue that morning. I just told him that I really didn't find the word any more offensive than cocksucker or motherfucker. I think a couple of the other regulars just about fainted from shock.

You're my new hero.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 07:39 AM

Re history of words in US given above (Artbrooks 1057) ~~ Coloured ☞ Black ☞ African-American — there are dangers of which one must beware: instance that well-meaning PC reporter who began a question addressed to a famous South African prime minister on his first visit to the United States with the words, "Mr Mandela, as an African-American, what is your opinion of ..."


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 02:36 PM

Sometimes avoiding words that cause offence is a matter of basic good manners. Maybe that's a hard concept for some people to take on board. But sometimes it can be prudent as well.

"What's black and blue and floats in the bay?"

"The last visitor who told a Newfie joke round here."


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: VirginiaTam
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 03:02 PM

When I was a kid in the 60s and 70s we were taught not to use retard or retarded. It was just rude.

now a days, I have noticed that young people use the term "that's retarded" quite a lot as they do "that's so gay." Quite often it means something other than the actual definition or common use meaning.

I just don't know about these yung uns. I find "7 differnt ways of ignernt" or something like "politicians must've drafted/designed that" suffices when I find something is singularly stupid.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: maple_leaf_boy
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 03:52 PM

There is no "I" in team, but there are three "u"'s in "shut the f up."
I think that's funny. That reminds me of something that a friend said
in response to "there is no "i" in team. His response was "yeah, but
there is a 'me'."


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Bainbo
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 03:56 PM

Tim Minchin tries to bring some perspective to the use of offensive words.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: GUEST,Riginslinger
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 04:17 PM

"Diversity"


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 04:35 PM

I do not believe that words are innocuous. Some are created or used for a reason, and that reason is to intimidate or hurt or insult or prove one person's dominance over another. I think the use of "N." ever is not done by decent people, assuming they are informed and aware, and it is hard to imagine they would not be in this day and age.

I also think that people can go out of their way to be offended by stuff, like not calling things man-hole covers etc. And adopt a stream..that is too much by my reckoning. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: kendall
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 04:52 PM

Call me a dinosaur if you wish but I miss the days when gentlemen refrained from using course language in the company of women. We have lost something valuable.


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Subject: RE: BS: offensive words
From: Beer
Date: 18 Jul 10 - 07:10 PM

You are right on Kendall. I'll be the first to use a little offensive language with men around but I still watch what I say in front of women. Showing my age I guess.
ad.


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